Sea Point community angered over the approved demolition of 'heritage' building
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Cape Town - The approval by Heritage Western Cape to demolish the building at 6 Kloof Road, Sea Point, has angered heritage and ratepayer organisations, vowing to appeal the decision and stop the demolition.
This is the latest building to be approved for total demolition, despite the Simon Van Der Stel Heritage Foundation, Sea Point, Fresnaye, Bantry Bay Ratepayers and Residents Association (SFB), and the City’s objections.
The foundation’s chairperson, Ian Pretorius, said the building was initially used by a medical practitioner and was later altered to be used as various restaurants over many years. It had also been used for commercial purposes.
Pretorius said a new structure – not subject to design guidelines – would have a detrimental effect on the existing Heritage resources, such as the Fire Station, the Deco block, cottages, and on the visual axis on Main Road.
“The building forms part of the memory of very many people. This site is very important in Sea Point – the triangle formed by Kloof, Regent, and Church can be described as the historic core of Sea Point.
“The demolition will result in the loss of a heritage resource and can result in insensitive background development.
“The house is situated directly behind the Fire Station and a multi-storey, modern structure here will indeed impact negatively on this prominent and unique Sea Point heritage resource,” Pretorius said.
SFB chairperson, Michael Ender, said not only did HWC approve the demolition, but it also decided that other graded buildings on the block, as well as others in proximity, did not warrant protection either, by agreeing that the developer could erect a replacement building – without any consideration for the negative impact that the new building might have on the graded buildings
“The National Heritage Resources Act, the legislation that guides these decisions, makes provision for the listing and grading of heritage significant buildings so as to ensure their protection and conservation.
“In recognition of its intrinsic heritage value and significance, the building in question has been graded as a IIIC Graded Heritage Resource. But, more importantly, the building is situated on a block, with only two other buildings, both of which have also been listed and graded as being of heritage value and significance,” he said.
Ender said SFB strenuously opposed the unconditional demolition of the building and would appeal HWC decision.
“If our appeal should fail, and unconditional approval for the demolition of this building is granted, then it will mean that no building or area of heritage value in Sea Point, as well as Cape Town for that matter, is safe from the same fate in the future,” he said.
City spokesperson Luthando Tyhalibongo said HWC was the mandated authority in the demolition of the house in Sea Point, and the City had provided its opinion to them.
HWC was approached for comment, but did not respond by the time of publication.